Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Words that Cause a Reaction

I ran across an article on Dictionary.com that talked about some of the most popular and unpopular words in the English language.

Language experts voted and they decided that the words "cellar door" was the most euphonious phrase in the English language.  Euphonious means pleasant in sound, agreeable to the ear.

A lot of people responded saying they did not like these words together because of the image it brought to mind - a dark and damp place. Some of the words they liked instead were serendipity, eclectic, and poetic. Words they hated were moist, slurp, blouse, and yolk.

I've always loved the word fervently and the phrase "terribly romantic". I hate the words blouse and coin purse. What are some words you like or hate?

13 comments:

Leigh Covington said...

Yeah, I don't know about "cellar door" either. Just the image. Reminds me of a scary story or something.

I don't like "moist" or "yolk." Great choice on "fervently" though. I also like "Serendipity."

Kelley said...

I don't like 'moist'

For whatever reason I like the word 'verbiage' :) haha

Emily R. King said...

I'm with Kelley. "Moist" is on my no-no list and so are "impact" and "thrust." It's kinda sad that they all appear in dirty romance novels. Ha!
Happy New Year!

Mac said...

My wife gets an expression like a tickled 2YO when she gets the excuse to say 'babushka.'

I'm dull. I love 'dude' and hate every cliche. (as though dude isn't a cliche. What can I say. I'm a hypocrite.)

Kate Larkindale said...

I love the word 'socks' and 'morbific', but I can't stand the word 'spongy'. Add 'moist' to make it 'moist' and 'spongy' and you have me curled into a small, quivering ball...

Piano Gal Val said...

The local weather man here used to use the word "blustery" ALL the time! It makes my whole body cringe - hate that word!!

Raine said...

I've been catching local TV personalties (at my end), using "in fairness" like the latest catch-phrase ever created and it drove me crazy. Really, whoever trended that should be suffering from the effects too. haha. The word that I like is "forever." :D

K. Turley (Clutzattack) said...

Can't stand "kiddos" when referring to children. Seriously, how is "kids" not slang enough?

carrieannebrownian said...

I tend to like words one doesn't get a chance to use often, like juxtaposition, xanthochroid (blonde or yellow-haired), xenoglossy (understanding a language one doesn't normally know, such as dreaming in fluent German or talking in French during a hypnosis), transmogrify, manifestation, and ameliorate.

I also love nonsense-sounding words, like horsefeathers (a Twenties slang word for nonsense) and hydrophosphates (a real word I learnt from one of my favoritest Laurel and Hardy sound shorts).

Lorelei said...

I have a LOT of words I hate, which also include swear words, but need to use them in my writing.

I will not refer to my husband as "my hubby" as will he not call me "the wife". We have names and if that fails us, "my wife(I like the term "lovely wife"), and "my husband" are nice terms of endearment.

I love to make up strange words, but I also like uncommon terms that you don't often hear just to bring freshness to a passage.

I, in fact like the word combo: "cellar door" only for the fact that I WANT the reader to be creeped out by it. I'm working on a murder mystery in which has a door down inside the cellar that is especially creepy...and old.

Jehhillenberg (J.E.) said...

I heard about "cellar door" being euphonious and beautiful from DONNIE DARKO. :) My ears and mouth still don't quite get the "oh my gosh, so beautiful to say and hear" effect the word's gained. I just don't get it. Just me, though.

I hate the term "blouse" as well. Just sounds more like my grandma's word or something ultra sophisticated for me. But others may misinterpret "top" -- which is what I use mostly beside "shirt".

One of my favorite words is "quintessential"

Anonymous said...

Slacks (for pants) makes me shudder. The word 'adhesive' makes me want to say it in front of a mirror making weird faces. I hate the word 'clasp' too. yuck. I can't even type it!!

Steph

Cindy C Bennett said...

"Smirk" is at the top of my hated list. To me it bespeaks of someone who is being an annoying smart*** and not in a charming way at all.
"Whereas" should never show up in writing outside of the scriptures.
"Snooty" should never be used (according to me), even if the character is snooty.
I don't particularly hate "blouse" but it does sound odd unless your older than, say, 70.
Hate it when wives & husbands call one another "mom" or "mother" and "dad" or "daddy". Oedipus much?

Love almost any word used sarcastically, or words that make you think of beauty and love - as long as they're not overdone or ridiculous.